Trainer Mark Johnston sets British record

Trainer Mark Johnston has set a record for the number of winners trained in a calendar year in Britain with Bavardages’ victory at Kempton.

Johnston, 60, who last year became the most successful trainer in terms of career winners in Britain, was saddling his 236th winner of 2019.

The previous record of 235 been shared between Richard Hannon sr, whose best tally was in 2013, and Richard Fahey, who equalled the mark in 2015, until Johnston joined them when Bo Samraan won at Pontefract.

“We knew it would come some time,” Johnston said.

“I wasn’t going chasing any records. The horses were only going to run if it was right for them and it would happen eventually.”

Before this year, Johnston had a personal best of 226.

He saddled an incredible 50 winners in July, having sent out 215 runners with a strike-rate of 23 per cent.

His stand-out performers this year have included the prolific King’s Advice, St Leger runner-up Sir Ron Priestley and Dee Ex Bee, who if not for Stradivarius might well have ruled the roost in the staying division.

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